Pride and Passion

Roberto Clemente played right field for the Pittsburgh Pirates with pride and passion for 18 years.  Off the field he wanted to be treated like any other human being and fought against prejudices.  He was called a goldbrick by the sportswriters, but you could not deny his greatness: 4 National League batting titles,  15 time All Star, 12 Gold Glove winner, 1966 National League Most Valuable Player, World Series MVP in 1971, and 3,000 hits.  He made it possible for Latin ballplayers to gain acceptance by fans.

He died in plane crash on December 31, 1972 helping to deliver relief supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. After his death he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in the summer of 1973.  Major League Baseball established the Clemente Award to rewarded players who give back to the community. He never lived long enough to see his sport San Juan, Puerto Rico, or the influence he would have on Latin ballplayers today.

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